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Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....

Article

Ludovico Borgo and Margot Borgo

[Porta, Baccio della]

(b Florence, March 28, 1472; d Florence, Oct 31, 1517).

Italian painter and draughtsman. Vasari and later historians agree that Fra Bartolommeo was an essential force in the formation and growth of the High Renaissance. He was the first painter in Florence to understand Leonardo da Vinci’s painterly and compositional procedures. Later he created a synthesis between Leonardo’s tonal painting and Venetian luminosity of colour. Equally important were his inventions for depicting divinity as a supernatural force, and his type of sacra conversazione in which the saints are made to witness and react to a biblical event occurring before their eyes, rather than standing in devout contemplation, as was conventional before. His drawings, too, are exceptional both for their abundance and for their level of inventiveness. Many artists came under his influence: Albertinelli, Raphael, Andrea del Sarto, Titian, Correggio, Beccafumi, Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino.

Fra Bartolommeo was the son of Paolo, a muleteer and carter. After 1478 he lived in a modest family house outside the Porta S Pier Gattolini in Florence and consequently was dubbed Baccio (a Tuscan diminutive for Bartolommeo) della Porta. In ...

Article

(b Toulouse, Nov 12, 1743; d Toulouse, Jan 31, 1804).

French painter and architect. He was the son of Guillaume Cammas (1698–1777), a painter and architect in Toulouse, who is known principally for having designed the first municipal theatre (1737) in Toulouse and the façade of the Capitole (1749–52), as well as for having carried out the decoration of the Salle des Illustres at the Hôtel de Ville. Lambert-François-Thérèse Cammas studied at the Académie Royale de Peinture in Toulouse, where in 1765 he won the Grand Prix with an Allegory on the Death of the Dauphin (Paris, Ecole B.-A.). The prize money was used to finance a trip to Italy. Cammas remained in Rome from 1767 to 1771, in 1770 being admitted to the Accademia di S Luca with the Accession of Pope Clement XIV (Rome, Accad. N. S Luca). In Rome, Cammas made many architectural studies and drew antique remains, but he was also interested in the problem of restoring ancient monuments. He may have carried out some architectural work; a chapel at the church of Pátrica, near Frosinone, is attributed to him....

Article

Delia Kottmann

Italian village in Lazio, north of Rome, known for its church. The church of SS Anastasius and Nonnosus is all that remains of the 6th-century Benedictine monastery, which submitted to Cluny in ad 940. Apart from some re-used fragments, the architecture is Romanesque, with a Cosmati pavement in opus sectile as well as an ambo and ciborium. The church is famous for its wall paintings from the first quarter of the 12th century. The apse and its adjacent walls, showing the 24 elders, are influenced by Romano–Christian motifs. Christ in the middle of the conch is flanked by Peter and Paul in a Traditio legis depiction, with a procession of lambs below. Underneath, Maria Regina has to be reconstructed in the middle, between two conserved angels followed by female saints in a Byzantine manner. No Romano–Christian iconography seems to have influenced the vast apocalyptic cycle painted on the side walls of the transept. A band of prophets runs beneath the roof on all the walls of the transept. An inscription in the apse indicates three Roman painters....

Article

Christian Norberg-Schulz

(b Hamburg, Dec 15, 1826; d Christiania [now Oslo], Dec 12, 1882).

Norwegian architect, sculptor and painter of German birth. He studied at the Hamburgische Gesellschaft zur Beförderung der Künste und nützlichen Gewerben (1840–43), afterwards training, still in Hamburg, as an architect under Alexis de Chateauneuf and then as an architect and sculptor in Cologne (1849–50). In 1850 von Hanno followed de Chateauneuf to Christiania to assist him with the construction of Trinity Church (1850–58). De Chateauneuf returned to Hamburg in 1851 because of failing health; von Hanno completed the building, simplifying de Chateauneuf’s design because of economic, as well as structural, problems. The church presents an unusual combination of a centralized, domed plan and a Gothic Revival style, much drier and heavier in detail than originally intended. Remaining in Norway for the rest of his life, von Hanno became one of Christiania’s leading architects. In collaboration with Heinrich Ernst Schirmer (1814–87), with whom he was in partnership from ...

Article

Jean-Pierre Babelon

[Ange, Etienne Martel]

(b Lyon, 1568/9; d Paris, Oct 3, 1641).

French architect, painter and draughtsman. He was the grandson of a painter of stained glass and son of a painter from Lyon, and he began his own career as a painter. Martellange trained in Italy from 1586 to 1587 with François Stella (1563–1605), and in 1590 he entered the Jesuit Order at Avignon, with the title of Pictor, taking his vows as a coadjutor brother at Chambéry in 1603; he was not, however, ordained a priest.

Martellange worked throughout France, producing architectural plans and some competent watercolour views of Jesuit establishments where work was in progress. Drawings and estimates were sent to the Jesuit Order in Rome and served as a basis for decisions by the leaders of the Order on the building projects in hand. From the study of his drawings (Paris, Bib. N.) it is possible to reconstruct a list of more than 20 Jesuit houses and colleges on which Martellange worked. His active career began in ...

Article

Pomposa  

Charles B. McClendon

Italian former Benedictine abbey near the mouth of the Po River and 45 km north of Ravenna in the province of Emilia Romagna. Although first documented in ad 874, a monastic settlement probably existed there at least two centuries earlier. Pomposa rose to prominence in the 10th and 11th centuries through the support of the Holy Roman emperors. Over the course of the 14th century, a notable series of wall paintings in three different buildings were sponsored despite the monastery’s waning fortunes. In 1663 the monastic community was suppressed by papal decree. The site was secularized in 1802 and became property of the Italian state after 1870.

The proportions of the wooden-roofed basilican church, along with the polygonal outline of its main apse, reflect influence from nearby Ravenna and Classe and suggest a date in the 8th or 9th century. An elaborate pavement of mosaic and cut stone (opus sectile...

Article

Richard Bösel

(b Trento, Nov 30, 1642; d Vienna, Aug 31, 1709).

Italian painter, architect and stage designer. He was a brilliant quadratura painter, whose most celebrated works, such as the decoration of the church of S Ignazio in Rome, unite painting, architecture and sculpture in effects of overwhelming illusionism and are among the high-points of Baroque church art. He was a Jesuit lay brother and produced his most significant work for the Society of Jesus. This affiliation was fundamental to his conception of art and to his heightened awareness of the artist’s role as instrumental in proclaiming the faith and stimulating religious fervour. The methods he used were those of Counter-Reformation rhetoric, as represented in Ignatius Loyola’s Spirited Exercises (1548). His architectural works are eclectic, and his unconventional combination of varied sources led to bold experiments with both space and structure. His ideas were spread by his highly successful two-volume treatise, Perspectiva pictorum et architectorum (1693–1700).

He received his first artistic training in Trento, with a painter who appears to have worked in the studio of Palma Giovane. He then studied with an unidentifiable pupil of, among others, Andrea Sacchi, who would have been the first to instruct Pozzo in the art of the Roman High Baroque, and he followed this painter to Como and Milan. In Milan Pozzo joined the Society of Jesus on ...

Article

Klára Garas

(b Innsbruck, Dec 25, 1673; d Neisse [Nysa, Poland], Nov 4, 1731).

Austrian architect and painter. In 1695 he became a lay brother of the Jesuit Order in Vienna. Between 1702 and 1709 he was the pupil of Andrea Pozzo, with whom he collaborated on the interior decoration of the Liechtenstein summer palace in Vienna (1705). In 1709–10 he completed the renovation of the church of St Anne in Vienna and of the refectory in the Clementinum, a Jesuit college in Prague; both were projects that had been begun by Pozzo. Between 1712 and 1715 Tausch produced his principal work, the decoration of the former Jesuit church at Trencsén (Trenčín, Slovakia) with illusionistic perspective ceiling paintings depicting the Glorification of St Ignatius of Loyola and St Francis Xavier. Between 1713 and 1719 he produced many paintings and designs for Jesuit church interiors in Hungary, Prague and Germany (Passau). After a journey to Rome (1720), and his modification and decoration of the Jesuit church of S Ignazio at Gorizia (...

Article

Richard Bösel

(b L’Aquila, Aug 1542; d Naples, July 15, 1596).

Italian architect and painter, active also in Spain, Portugal, Germany and Malta. He was in Rome from the early 1560s and c. 1570 executed the decoration of the Cappella dell’Ascensione, including an altarpiece showing the Ascension, in Santo Spirito in Sassia, Rome. His painting style, though provincial, shows the influence of Mannerism and of the successors in Rome of Pellegrino Tibaldi and Michelangelo. Also characteristic is an exaggerated expressiveness and a peculiar imbalance in the depiction of figures and space. He worked partly in collaboration with Scipione Pulzone and Gaspare Celio (1571–1640).

Valeriano, however, is more important for his work as an architect. The first buildings that can be securely attributed to him were designed in Spain, where he went in 1573, becoming a member of the Jesuit Order there the following year. These included the church in Villagarcìa de Campos and projects for the Jesuits at Seville, Granada, Córdoba, Málaga and Trigueros (all unexecuted or only partially executed). He came into contact with Juan de Herrera, whose work on the Escorial, near Madrid, clearly influenced him in his own work on the Collegio Romano in Rome after he returned to Italy in ...